Correctional officer at Pennington County Jail aims to make a difference

Local News

RAPID CITY, S.D. (KELO) — It’s not an easy job. But being a correctional officer can be rewarding.

Samantha Decory never thought she’d find herself working in a jail.

“I’ve never seen what a jail looked like on the inside so I applied, got the job and at first I thought this isn’t for me. But the more I went to work and showed up and did my job I began to really get the hang of it and really like it. And I didn’t see myself doing anything else other than working in the jail,” Decory said.

Decory first worked as a correctional officer on the Rosebud Reservation, where she is from.

“I like making a difference, even if it’s little, like saying hi, I hope you have a good day, and simply addressing their name,” Decory said.

She has now been working in Rapid City for 4 years.

On average, about 56 percent of the inmate population here at the Pennington County Jail is Native American.

“So I can relate to them on some level of the stressors that they have. Trying to fit in with society here but then struggling with things that they don’t want to talk about,” Decory said.

It makes a difference for inmates who are going through difficult times. Decory’s supervisors say she is compassionate, respectful and hard working.

“It is that hard work that’s worth doing, you are doing something for the community and you are having an impact,” Wade Anderson, Security Captain, said.

“Then I would see them back out there and they are happy, it’s good to see,” Decory said.

Here are some Pennington County career opportunities.

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